Community Development Agency

How can printers "green their businesses? First bring their operations into compliance with all environmental regulations, then adopt pollution prevention and resource conservation practices. The program checklists offer a variety of options for meeting program standards. Here are some examples of what you can do. And by the way, many of the listed practices will save you time and money. The Green Business Program consulted with printers, and representatives of Printing Industries of Northern California (PINC) to develop this list of Green Printing Practices.

Top 10 Green Printing Practices

Printing Chemicals

  1. Computerize pre-press operations. Eliminates photochemicals and saves water and energy.
  2. Establish a solvent recycling program. Saves material and reduces air pollution.
  3. Use alcohol-free printing. Improves air quality; improves worker health and safety; and reduces chemical use.


  1. Print on "treeless" and recycled content papers. Saves trees, energy, and water; encourages new agricultural development; and keeps paper out of the landfill.
  2. Educate customers on "green printing". Printers produce a "greener" product which helps in pollution prevention, compliance, resource conservation.
  3. Use low VOC inks. Reduces air pollution and improves employee safety.
  4. Sequence print jobs by ink color. Saves ink changes, labor and ink waste.
  5. Establish inventory control. Reduces waste to landfill and saves money.
  6. Communicate without paper. Cuts cost and use of paper and solid waste; saves time, postage, and/or fax costs.


  1. Use energy efficient equipment. Saves energy and money.
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